August 24, 2001
"America's cattle producers are disappointed in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Foreign Agriculture Service's (FAS) failure to implement the Export Sales Reporting Requirements regulation scheduled to go into effect on Aug. 24, 2001.
"USDA's announcement on July 25, 2001, was expected to be the final step in a process that began with the original notice in November of 1996. USDA's latest action will again delay the reporting requirements that provide producers with the information needed to make timely and informed marketing decisions. The reporting requirements were to include certain beef to the list of commodities subject to be reported under FAS export sales report.
"Beef export demand is expected to continue increasing in the future; therefore, it is vital that producers have timely indicators of current export market activity. Currently available export information is more than two months old. Under the new rule, exporters will be required to report, on a weekly basis, information concerning the quantity, country of destination, and marketing period of shipment for their export sales.
"The impact of export activity on beef demand is now much greater than just 15 years ago. International demand for U.S. beef has grown to the point that it now represents a significant portion of total beef demand. Nearly 10 percent of the annual U.S. beef production is currently exported compared to only one-half of one percent in the mid-1980s.
"The National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) has voiced concerns with USDA about this delay and has received assurance that export reports will be updated in a timely manner. We will continue to press USDA to assure export reporting is implemented."